Asia & Pacific, Australia, International, Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand, New Zealand general election, World

Popularity of Ardern’s Labour Party Plummets According to New Poll

The New Zealand Labour Party’s popularity has fallen to the lowest level since it came into government, according to a new Newshub-Reid research poll.

Labour dropped 5.9 percentage points to 32.3 percent, while its opposition, the National party, had edged up 0.2 points to 40 percent.

For the minor parties, the right-leaning ACT hit 10 percent, and the left-leaning Greens reached 9.5 percent.

If these results eventuate in the next general election, a National and ACT coalition would successfully be able to form a government, while a Labour-Greens alliance would not.

However, NZ First, the party that Labour formed a coalition government with in 2017 but later voted out of parliament in 2020, is also back on the map at 3.3 percent.

A separate poll by Horizon research found that support for NZ First was over five percent, meaning it may potentially again find itself in a position to choose whether to form government with either National-ACT or Labour-Greens.

A coalition government is extremely common in New Zealand due to its Mixed Member Proportional (MMP) voting system, where each voter gets two votes—one party and one electorate vote.

As such, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s landslide victory in the 2020 election that allowed Labour to hold government without forming a coalition was a historical event.

Ardern Not Fussed

In response to the poll numbers, Ardern said she was taking the results with a “grain of salt” as internal party polling showed Labour’s numbers were equal with National.

“In our polling, which is regular, National and Labour are neck-in-neck. And so, I think that feels like a fairly accurate representation right now,” she told TVNZ’s Breakfast. “But, we are roughly a year or so out from an election.

The internal polling numbers for October, obtained by the NZ Herald, placed both Labour and National at 35 percent, ACT at 11 percent, and Greens at 9 percent.

Ardern said Labour had won elections despite even worse polling numbers through policies that focused on the people.

“We’re in a global economic crisis; the focus has to be on what we are doing for our people,” she said.

“And yes, of course, then you’ve got the politics of it and making sure people know that if they are seeing that decreased price at the pump … that that’s been because the government has made those decisions to put those supports in place.”

She added that it was harder to do this because people accessed information from a variety of sources, making it a “very noisy environment.”

The Newshub-Reid poll has a margin of error of 3.1 percent.

Rebecca Zhu

Rebecca Zhu is based in Sydney. She focuses on Australian and New Zealand national affairs. Got a tip? Contact her at rebecca.zhu@epochtimes.com.au.


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